Simplex radio logo &

Philco Logo

A BRIEF HISTORY OF A SANDUSKY, OHIO INSTITUTION
[Most of the material on this page is from the Follett House Museum, Sandusky, Ohio]

"Announcement was made Saturday of a new industry that is to be established in Sandusky.

The company only recently formed is known as The Simplex Radio Company and will manufacture here a five tube tuned radio frequency set having but one dial.The product is said to be years ahead of anything on the market as hitherto three dials and a multiplicity of controls have been needed, making tuning a task needed sometime considerable patience and always skill and care. . . . . . . Mr. Maibohm says, 'we expect to give Sandusky an industry that will shortly employ upwards of 200 people.' . . . . . . . The board of directors comprise H.C. Maibohm, F.H. Myers, W.H. Reinhart, W.J. Sprow, E.J. Windisch, E.H. Mack, and W.W. Wappner of Mansfield, all of whom are former stockholders of the Maibohm Motors Company".-- SANDUSKY REGISTER, Sandusky, Ohio, November 16, 1924

The Simplex Radio Company first opened its doors in a small building on the northeast corner of King and Monroe Streets on the west side of Sandusky, Ohio.

Simplex original site

During WW II, Philco purchased a second facility on Warren St. in Sandusky. It remained open until 1960.

Philco Warren StPlant

In 1937, Simplex moved into the old Miabohm Motor Company building at 3130 W. Monroe Street in Sandusky. They were 77 employees.

Philco Monroe Street plant

[Current view of the old Monroe Street plant]

Also in 1937, The Philco Corporation of Philadelphia, PA, purchased Simplex stock to gain a controlling interest of Simplex Radio.

By December 1940, Philco owned 91.5 percent of the Simplex stock. Philco purchased Simplex in 1944, renaming the company to Philco in 1948.

In January 1942, a contract was let to Philco to manufacture the SCR-535 radar equipment for the Army Air Corp. This was the first radar equipment ever used by the Americans to identify our planes from the enemy and played a major part in saving both American and English planes and many lives during the fight for England.

Simplet radio Simplex NT Simplex radio

SAMPLES OF SIMPLEX RADIOS

"In 1957, Philco celebrated 20 years in Sandusky. During this span of two decades Philco became the world's largest manufacturer of radio receiving sets, and through research and engineering has become a leader in this century's greatest advancement in communication—television. Philco is also leading the way in the comparitively new field of high fidelity sound reproduction. . . . . From 77 employees, we have grown to an employee roster of nearly 1500 persons. In some years, we have employed as high as 2200 persons." -- Philco Sandusky Magazine, June 1957

Philco 20 years in Sandusky 1937-1957

 

Simplex entrance Philco entrance
This is the same main entrance at 3130 W. Monroe St., Sandusky, Ohio. Only the facade was changed
In 1963, Philco closed its Sandusky plant and moved its radio and television manufacturing operation back to Philadelphia. The Monroe Street plant remained a warehouse for Philco until 1964 when the building was sold to the Air Reduction Company.
Here are a few of the Philco radio models that were produced in Sandusky, Ohio:


Here is a recent story in the SANDUSKY REGISTER dated February 27, 2007

Questions and comments can be addressed to Ernst S. Sibberson at ernst@firelandsradios.com



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